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House Dems Unveil Bill Blocking Trump’s Pullout from Paris Climate Deal

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi speaks during the introduction of the Climate Action Now Act on Capitol Hill, March 27, 2019. (Joshua Roberts/Reuters)

House Democrats proposed a bill Wednesday that would prevent President Trump from pulling the U.S. out of the Paris Climate Agreement, as he announced he would in July 2017.

The Climate Action Now Act would require the president to propose a plan for keeping the U.S. in accord with the Paris deal’s emission-reduction goals, which were agreed to by President Obama in 2015. It would also prohibit the administration from using federal funds to pull out of the deal, as Trump has promised to do in November 2020, the moment it becomes legally possible.

The Paris deal requires the U.S. to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions by 17 percent by 2020 and 26 to 28 percent by 2025, as defined by 2005 pollution levels.

Introducing the Climate Action Now Act, Speaker Nancy Pelosi called climate change the “existential threat of our generation, of our time, a crisis manifested in natural disasters of epic proportions.”

“This is about jobs,” Pelosi said. “It’s about good-paying green jobs. It’s about public health, clean air, and clean water for our children. It’s about defending our national security.”

Representative Kathy Castor of Florida, chairwoman of the House Select Committee on Climate Crisis, sponsored the five-page proposal.

The more radical Green New Deal, sponsored by Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Senator Ed Markey, has not received the support of Democratic leadership, even as it has excited the progressive base and earned the support of several prominent contenders for the party’s 2020 presidential nomination. Pelosi herself has mocked the proposal, which on Tuesday was rejected by the Senate rejected in a procedural vote.

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